American Go E-Journal

Seattle Go Center Sues Nihon Ki-in

Thursday April 19, 2012

The Seattle Go Center filed suit against the Nihon Ki-in on April 19 in King County Superior Court. The suit charges the Nihon Ki-in with breach of contract and fraud in connection with the Nihon Ki-in’s recent decision to sell the Seattle Go Center building “in order to redirect these resources to the New York Go Center,” said the Center in a press release. The Nihon Ki-in closed the New York Go Center in November 2010, though it still owns the building it was housed in. “The Seattle Go Center deeply regrets that we have been forced to take this action,” the Center’s press release continued. “We are very disappointed that despite more than a month of urging the Nihon Ki-in to enter into negotiations with us, the Nihon Ki-in has not yet done so.  The cloud of uncertainty hanging over Seattle Go Center’s future has severely impaired our ability to conduct fundraising.” The Nihon Ki-in has not thus far given any reason for its apparent decision to revive the New York Go Center at the expense of Seattle’s, either publicly, to Seattle Go Center Directors or to the American Go Association’s (AGA) Board. “While I would have preferred a negotiated settlement,” said AGA President Allan Abramson, “given that the Nihon Ki-in has thus far ignored the AGA’s two letters seeking information on the basis for their decision, we certainly understand why the Seattle Go Center felt it had to take action. The AGA will continue to support the Center, which has been such a success.”  The Seattle Go Center, which opened in 1995 and is now self-supporting, is one of those founded by Kaoru Iwamoto 9P, whose famous atomic bomb go game against Hashimoto Utaro is depicted on the outside of the Seattle Center (above right) and who traveled extensively throughout the West with the aim of spreading go to promote peace, founding go centers in São PauloNew YorkSeattle and Amsterdam. “Iwamoto-Sensei wanted to promote international friendship by providing a place where people of all backgrounds and ethnicities could enjoy learning and playing go together,” said the Seattle Go Center. “We think we are doing a great job of fulfilling that vision.”
photo: at this year’s Jin Chen Memorial Tournament; photo by Brian Allen

Update: dispute settled

Categories: U.S./North America